Saturday afternoon, I was working a lunch shift at Olive Garden and it was honestly a very good day serving. I made out pretty well in tips, but most importantly the customers were fantastic, especially one table in particular. This family from Syracuse told me they were killing some time before they went down Maple Road to watch their nephew play football. I told them that I wrote about the Bulls for Trainwreck Sports and Bullet Points and that I’d like to keep an eye out for their nephew. They told me he was #9 on Eastern Michigan and I promised to watch for him. A few series went by and I still hadn’t seen him. Then the announcers said that the backup QB for EMU was beginning to warm up and sure enough there was a big green 9 right on the front of his jersey. I feel like had Mike Glass III been the starting passer for EMU, he would’ve been a little less attention grabbing, but as he came into the game I had a feeling that my encounter from earlier in the day would come full circle. Glass III wasn’t able to lead the full comeback for his team, but he provided a spark in their offense and a scare for Bulls fans. It was a small moment, but as my career in this line of work is hopefully just starting to take off, it’s one that I will absolutely never forget.
Enough about me and Mike Glass III's cousins, aunt and uncle. Onto the Bulls, who as a whole had an extremely impressive outing on Saturday. There were very few negatives coming out of this game despite giving up at least 28 point for the second straight week.
7 Rec, 188 Yards, 3 TDs
The MAC Offensive Player of the Week had the best game of his college career and may have gotten the attention of some NFL scouts. Going back to week one, he was in my Horns Down section of this column as I criticized his lack of consistency. He may be the most consistent player on the team in the last 2 games. His returns have been solid and he’s contributing on offense. Between KJ, AJ and Rushing III, the Bulls have quite the three-headed monster at receiver.
21/26, 325 yards, 3 TD
Last week he was a Horns Down because of his indecisiveness and because he made a lot of poor decisions. Even with those mistakes he got the nation talking about him. This performance has accelerated the conversation! Mel Kiper and many others now have TJ in either their Top 5 Underclassmen QBs or the Top 5 Quarterbacks PERIOD. He threw for over 80% this week and really didn’t have a single bad pass. On another note, I walked passed him on campus the other day and let me tell you, he is even bigger in person than he looks on the field. Every week I count my blessings and remember how lucky we are that this man is a Bull.
It seems that every week, the player that Leipold chooses to wear #41 has an outstanding game. This new tradition is truly inspiring to me and obviously to the players who were teammates of Soloman Jackson. While Harris was a force to be reckoned with all game, there were two consecutive plays where he may have changed the outcome of the game. The score was 28-21 and the Eagles were marching down the field. Harris sacked Wiegers and set up a long third down. Glass III came in on the next play and ran for what would’ve been a first down. Harris managed to force a fumble on a drive that might have resulted in a tie football game. The Bulls would end up scoring the next touchdown and extending their lead to 14. I don’t have a highlight to show you, but that’s my play of the week.
TJ has yet to be sacked this season and everyone on the running back committee is having success. Enough said.
One-on-One Defensive Battles
The Bulls were firing on all cylinders on offense and I don’t have a single bad thing to say about their performance. The defense however needs to step up a little more in the future. As a unit, they were fine but they gave up two 70+ yard touchdowns and that’s unacceptable. They also gave up a few big gains off of lost 1 v. 1 battles with the ball carrier. I feel like tighter man coverage and tackling are going to be two points of emphasis throughout practice this week. Without those two TD’s the score would’ve been 35-14. Take away the one in garbage time and its 35-7.
Buffalo won the penalty battle only having seven for 47 to EMU’s 11 for 98. The problem is when those penalties were committed. 4 of the 7 penalties allowed Eastern Michigan drives to continue. Not all penalties are bad penalties. A hold can sometimes protect your QB and save a yard or two if the loss on a sack can be that bad. In soccer, slide tackling a player’s legs out from under them to stop a breakaway can be justified. Any penalty on third down, however, is inexcusable.
Notice neither of those Horns Downs were about individual players. These were minor occurrences by many players that can be easily corrected. All around the Bulls get an A- from me this week. Fix the small things and that’s suddenly an A.
Thank you for reading as always. This stampede isn’t stopping any time soon so make sure you make it out a game, a tailgate or at least to a watch party! We’re in for a long, exciting ride this season because, and I can’t believe I haven’t mentioned it yet, the Bulls are 3-0! Be sure to get out to Papi Grande's this week to watch the game against Rutgers at noon, including a few specials as well as some of the other guys from Trainwreck providing some live entertainment! Follow me (@wakejatkins) and @BULLetPoints716 on twitter to keep up with the Bulls and call me out on my shit if you disagree with me! Until next time, #HornsUp.